Works (in) Progress Administration Vol. 8: Coal Dust Soul

by Bill Mallonee/WPA

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These songs were written shortly after the numerous mining disasters that occured in the US and abroad in the first few months of 2010. Photos from the 1930's-1940's also served as a reminder that, in many ways, not much has changed in the day to day lives of these men and women. Their courage and determination remain an inspiration. This EP is dedicated to their spirit. Lyrics are available in blog form at www.myspace.com/worksprogressadministration Personnel: Bill Mallonee: Guitars, vocals, bass, drums, harmonicas Muriah Rose: Keyboards, vocals

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released June 9, 2010

Bill Mallonee: vocals, guitars, organ, harp, drums
Muriah Rose: piano, vocals

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Bill Mallonee

Bill Mallonee is an Athens, Ga. Americana artist w/ 70 plus albums, spanning a 20 year career. Voted by Paste Music Magazine #65 in their prestigious "Top 100 Living Songwriters" poll. He fronted the band Vigilantes of Love from 1991-2001. Mallonee has worked with other great artists such as Buddy Miller, Emmylou Harris, and Peter Buck from REM. ... more

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Track Name: Something More Than Meets the Eye
SOMETHING MORE THEN MEETS THE EYE (OPINE)
words & music: bill mallonee

From the stories to the footnotes of Life's book
from the sullied facts to something a lil' closer to the Truth
From the gallows every sage will one day meet
To the fires at the stakes warming every prophets feet

Past all that is abusive to something more alive
something more...than meets the eye

it's all garbled transmissions & static in these news reports
It's a wonder truth ever gets her day in court
having to speak through all those agendas so long and long
that make sure their version is the only one

Past all that is elusive to something more alive
something more than meets the eye

So it's a lil' too cramped? Maybe a little to confining 'round here?
We were all meant for something bigger, dear
meant to swim in an River , one so deep and wide
into that Ocean of Love just there on the other side

on to something more conducive, something more alive
something more than meets the eye

when it's all just dead lies on telephone lines and friends? Well, they're not around
You do what cha must shake off the dust and find yourself a brand new town
One more soap-box to stand on, one more water hole where you drown
Take the time to opine...and push the pedal down

onto something more conclusive but something more alive
something more than meets the eye
Track Name: You Could See It Coming From A Thousand Miles Off
1,000 Miles Off Year: 2005
Written by Bill Mallonee for CyBrenJoJosh (BMI)

what's it gonna take to set the record straight
the critics they're just dogs looking for a hydrant to piss on
what's it gonna take when ghosts are hard to shake
the harvest was a-waiting the sickle and the scythe
that cold and distant wind
that autumn's bringing in
i was waiting in the wings
for you to save me

that aggravating loose thread
the knotted thin line of hope
when your heart's grown far too used
to the scatter gun approach
and the walls are paneled
with the salvation prayers off the tv channel
it's bigger than you feared
those objects in your mind's side view mirror

It don't take a mathematician
to figure out the loss
hell you could see it coming from 1,000 miles off

i awoke to a voice i heard in the hall
sun illuminates a peeling paint kitchen wall
you're drinking whisky from a cup
that says i love grandma
that you bought at the space center
in Huntsville. Alabama
it was top down on a highway
of promises and trust
now the labor bosses they all cleared out
after boom there is the bust

never took a palm reader
to have foreseen the loss
hell you could see it coming from 1,000 miles off

and the eyes are downcast
like everybody else's here
and the secret's that you feel like shit
but don't say nothing dear
soil's lost its heart and the veins have all been cleared
and the blood ran out on that spur line of yesteryear
and there's no living it down
the camera crews and documentary
can barely scratch the surface
like we did the hills of west virginny

never took a prophet
to have foreseen the loss
hell you could see it coming from 1,000 miles off
Track Name: Coal Dust Soul
COAL DUST SOUL Music/lyrics: bill mallonee

You tell yourself it’s only temporary
just a few years you gotta shave off of your youth
But sure as tomorrow, given all you’ll have to borrow
that company store won’t ever turn you loose
chorus 1
a miner’s world is a dark one
miner’s world is full of ghosts
a miner’s I’ll guarantee...
she prays more than most
I won’t have much to offer
no, I won’t have much to show
nothing but this coal dust soul
nothing but this coal dust soul

There’s always one more kid who'll be gambling
but there’s really no escaping the curse
when all yer measured by down here are the veins you can clear
and what you can scrape outta the earth
chorus 2
a miner’s world is a dark one
miner’s world is full of ghosts
a miner’s wife, I reckon,
she prays more than most
and if I get to heaven
I won’t have much in tow
nothing but this coal dust soul
nothing but this coal dust soul

now to steal the earth’s possessions
must surely come with a cost
and I know all my friends down here
by the sound of their cough
I know ‘em by the smiles they smile
beneath the grimy face
I know ‘em by the things
they can’t really say
chorus 3
a miner’s world is a dark one
miner’s world is full of ghosts
a miner’s wife, I’m here to say
she prays more than most
and if I do get meet Jesus
I won’t have much to show
nothing but this coal dust soul
nothing but this coal dust soul